Monday, January 30, 2012

Saltisford Canal Arm

The Saltisford Canal Arm branches off the Grand Union Canal in the Saltisford area of Warwick though only runs for about 400m nowadays because of building over the old canal bed. Originally this stretch of canal, which opened in the 1790s, was the start of the Warwick-Birmingham Canal and allowed goods to be bought to the centre of Warwick (as originally it went much closer to the centre of the town). The coming of the canal helped stimulate economic development in the area including the Warwick Gas Works built in 1812 near the terminating basin, coal being bought by canal to feed it1. There were also a number of timber yards, malt houses and a brewery situated around the basin.

As the canals decayed commercially in the 20th century the arm fell out of use with part of it filled in reducing it to its current length. The viability of what remained was left in doubt as it became derelict in the 1970s. However in 1982 the Saltisford Canal Trust was formed to restore the remaining part of the arm and now it houses a number of permanently occupied house boats and can be very busy in the Summer.
Saltisford Canal Arm, Warwick
The arm originally fed into a basin which was located behind the Antelope pub (see below). A Sainsburys now occupies the site!
Antelope P8270146
1) W.B. Stephens (Editor). "The borough of Warwick: Introduction: the suburbs from c. 1600." A History of the County of Warwick: Volume 8: The City of Coventry and Borough of Warwick (1969): 434-447. British History Online. Web. 30 January 2012.

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